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Phaneesh MurthyiGate CEO, on Monday inked the deal that catapults him to where he belongs: with the big boys of Indian tech services industry. He’s had to wait eight years to get there. With his much smaller company acquiring India‘s seventh largest IT services firm, Patni Computers, to create a billion dollar entity, he now has the launch pad to prove that his success as global sales head of Infosys Technologies—where he took revenues from $2-million to $700-million in a decade—was as much his effort as that of the storied founders of India’s second largest IT services firm.

The 46-year old IIT-Madras and IIM-Ahmedabad grad’s stint at Infosys from 1992-2002 earned him the title of “the other Murthy.” And the buzz in Bangalore is that he met with his former mentor, N R Narayana Murthy, sometime in October last, after he decided to bid for Patni. What transpired between the two remains private but as one looks at the iGate-Patni deal, it is difficult to get away from the underlying Infosys thread in the story.

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